The Anonymous Widower

Sweden’s Mammals – Would I Go Again?

It is now a few days since I returned from my trip to see Sweden’s mammals, and it is time to pause for reflection.

Although, I ask the question of whether I would go again in this post, I actually don’t think, I would do the exact same trip again, as I’ve done it once and the only disappointment was that the bears and the wolves were on holiday too.

So I might go just to see bears or wolves and Sweden would be one of the places I would look at. After all, it’s a country, where things are done correctly, the food and accommodation, I had on the trip was very good and overall, it was all well organised.

Overall, I enjoyed it immensely and don’t regret going one bit in any way.

I said on the first night on the boat looking for beavers, that we would get some surprises and things wouldn’t turn out as expected.

Obviously, the problems with the bears and the wolves was one surprise, but as someone who lived in the countryside for forty years, I know how unpredictable animals and birds can be.

But we also had two very positive surprises; the ants and the magnificent skies.

If I was organising the tours, I would make sure that these were explained better.

But then as in all things, it is attention to detail that counts.

I have a feeling that this tour and others like it will get more popular, as surely Norway and Sweden, are the one place close to the UK, where you can see large  wild animals.  It’s also an ideal short break.

I think coupled with visits to Stockholm and Oslo at either end, it could be part of a fuller exploration of Scandinavia for everybody.

THe tour I took was organised by Marcus Eldh of Wild Sweden and I booked it through Naturetrek in the UK.

All of the posts can be accessed by clicking this link.

September 14, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

We Need A Duty-Free By-Pass At Airports

Oslo Airport had one of the largest duty free areas I’ve seen in a long time. It was very crowded too, with passengers trailing cases and carrying overflowing baskets.

I found it difficult to walk through  and it was a completely wasted few minutes, that I could have spent much better.

It’s all totally pointless, as if duty-free was banned on flights and passengers bought their duty free as they arrived in a country, airlines wouldn’t waste fuel flying all that useless junk around the skies.

I wonder how much duty free contributes to global warming?

The EU should make it the law, that every airport has a by-pass for those, who don’t want to buy any duty-free.

And was there anything to eat that was gluten-free in the airport? I didn’t see anything that was!

September 11, 2013 Posted by | Transport, World | , , , , | Leave a comment

Oslo’s Tourist And Transport Information

There is a lot of transport information in Oslo, but much of it, is not really geared at tourists and especially those that walk everywhere like me. Here’s some examples.

Note that the bus timing information is in the stop itself and the clock in the train information.

But there were no walking maps and you needed to have a paper guide or book in your hand.

September 11, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

A Missed Opportunity

Was it? But some years ago, I backed a guy making something called a TEBA brush mat. The company failed, but judging  by these examples in Oslo, mats are being sold under another guise.

I’ve been lucky in life, but perhaps this is one place, where I didn’t do as well as I should have.

September 11, 2013 Posted by | Business, World | , | Leave a comment

Endless Bits Of Paper

Queue in Norway and Sweden and you always seem to have to get a ticket with a number on it.

but I suppose, they have plenty enough trees to make the paper for the tickets.

September 11, 2013 Posted by | World | , , , | Leave a comment

A Use For Smokers

As I couldn’t see the England match in Ukraine in the hotel, I went outside for a walk.

I found myself taking to a couple of pilots for Norwegian, who had gone outside for a cough and a drag.

At least I had some pleasant company for twenty minutes or so.

it’s amazing the number of pilots you meet, who love their ciggies! I’ve even been on the flight deck of a DC-10, where I was the only guy who wasn’t puffing away!

September 10, 2013 Posted by | Health, Sport, Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Museums On The Bygdøy Peninsular

There are several museums on the Bygdøy Peninsular.

I took a ferry to see two of them; the Viking Ship Museum and the Fram Museum.

I would have gone to the other two; the Kon-Tiki Museum and the Norwegian Maritime Museum, but the weather had turned and I was suffering a bit from the cold.

There is a lot to see on the peninsular and I wish I’d been able to devote more time to it. I think it would be easier, if on the peninsular, there was better signposts and maps and perhaps a bus on a route past all the attractions. An inclusive ticket for all the attractions on the peninsular would save time too!

September 10, 2013 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment

Oslo City Hall

I didn’t like Oslo City Hall. But then it was designed in the 1930s and opened in 1950s, so it’s of the same era as that great British eyesore; Battersea Power Station.

Oslo City Hall

Oslo City Hall

it’s scale is all wrong and except for the clock, it has nothing to recommend it.

September 10, 2013 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment

Mind The Gap – Norwegian Style

As I got into the Metro train to go away from the stop at the Munch Museum, I thought I heard the familiar phrase from the London Underground – Mind the Gap.

There was this picture on the train window.

Mind The Gap - Norwegian Style

Mind The Gap – Norwegian Style

However, when I took the Airport Express it was more obvious.

MInd The Gap On Airport Express

MInd The Gap On Airport Express

This article from Wikipedia explains the worldwide use of the phrase, but Oslo doesn’t get a mention.

September 10, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

The Munch Museum

After the National Gallery, I took the metro to get to the Munch Museum to see the other half of the Munch 150 exhibition. It runs to October the 13th, so you’ve about four weeks.

I was also able to get some excellent Swedish meatballs at the museum.

Munchies At The Munch Museum

Munchies At The Munch Museum

Were they Munchies?

September 10, 2013 Posted by | Food, World | , , , | Leave a comment